The South Laurel boys and girls golf teams are expecting another impressive season on the green.
South Laurel Coach Steve King is expecting the boys golf team to be extremely competitive this year, as the Cardinals are returning seven players this season with only one new addition to the team in eighth grader Trey Jackson.
“I expect Brett Norvell and Brayden Reed to do well this year,” King said. “Brett has been on the team for five years and Brayden for four. They are both experienced and capable of competing for individual awards. Ashton Graland has made great improvements this year and has been a solid third player. We are inexperienced in the four and five spots but there are some players that I expect to step up to the challenge.”
King is expecting to his Cardinals compete in every tournament and hopes to see them finish around the middle of the pack in each competition, which they have done in their first three invitational tournaments of the season and King hopes to continue seeing as the season develops.
On the girls side, the Lady Cardinals will have two players returning from last year’s team and one new addition in Sarah Reese, meaning his players will compete in tournaments as individuals and not as a team.
“Returning this year is Sophey Smith and Emily Brown,” King said. “Both girls are excellent athletes but are still learning the game of golf, which is a very hard game to learn. Joining the team this year is Sarah Reese. Sarah has played some in the past with her father and grandfather. Sarah is improving quickly and I expect her to become a good player.”
Despite being inexperienced, King said he’s already seen improvements from his girls’ team.
“All our girls have great potential, it just takes time and practice,” he said. “We are an inexperienced team but the girls have made great improvement since last year.”
The girls team will be playing in several matches and tournaments this year to gain more experience where King hopes to see his players get better with each practice and match to prepare them for the postseason.
“The only way to be a good competition golfer is to play in lots of competitions,” King said.
King, who is entering his eighth year coaching golf, is expecting another great year for the South Laurel boys and girls golf teams.
“I am a blessed coach for sure,” said King. “All of my players are just good kids and student-athletes. All my parents are very helpful and supportive.
“I want my players to love the game as I do and continue to be golfers for the rest of their lives. It's the only game going where you have to be your own referee. The game teaches patience, perseverance, respect, sportsmanship and integrity. It's a great game to teach life skills.”